• Home
  • /
  • GAA
  • /
  • The Most Unusual Sporting Background We've Seen Of An Irish Politician

The Most Unusual Sporting Background We've Seen Of An Irish Politician

The Most Unusual Sporting Background We've Seen Of An Irish Politician
Conor Neville
By Conor Neville
Share this article

As was written before, if a protestor was to toss a bag of flour from the Leinster House public gallery onto the ranks of TDs seated below, the chances of a politician getting his seat white would be very high indeed.

However, there were rare cases.

The late Ted Nealon (don't pretend you haven't devoured his Nealon's Guides, his exhaustive catalogue of every TD returned at the most recent election) carries the torch for those who have partaken in the most foreign of foreign sports.

Certainly, he was far from unique among Irish politicians in being a ex-Gaelic footballer. He played inter-county football for Sligo between 1953 and 1959, (enduring a heartbreaking defeat to Galway in the 1954 Connacht final) and he soldiered for the county's kingpins at club level, Tourlestrane.


However, Nealon, a TD between 1981 and 1997 was almost certainly unique among the habitues of Leinster House in playing rugby league. Yes, during a short time living in Manchester, he played League for the Cadishead Rhinos.

There were no votes in it. We're not sure how prominent this would have been on his campaign literature in Sligo town but it should have been top of the list.

In the unlikely event that Martin Offiah moves to Ireland before the next General Election then it looks like he will be the only League player in the Dail for the foreseable future.


Or maybe we're wrong. If any other Irish politicians, past or present, please come forward now and correct us. Did any of you play the game described by Mike 'Stevo' Stephenson below?


Read more: Dan Carter: Gaelic Football Is A Brutal Sport -Worse Than Rugby!



Join The Monday Club Have a tip or something brilliant you wanted to share on? We're looking for loyal Balls readers free-to-join members club where top tipsters can win prizes and Balls merchandise

Processing your request...

You are now subscribed!

Share this article

Copyright © 2024. All rights reserved. Developed by Square1 and powered by PublisherPlus.com